by Morolape Odumade
Often in the past year I’ve asked myself, “Do I trust God?”
The answer is usually a quick, “Yes, of course!” What’s not to trust? I mean, it’s God, right? So yes, I trust Him. Off the top of my head, without even thinking about it, the response to the question of trusting God is unequivocally, yes!
Yes, I trust God, but the next question silences me. “Do I trust God?”
To this I don’t have a quick answer because it opens a world of other questions like:
- If I trust God then why am I so impatient?
- Why does it seem impossible for me to wait for his timing?
- Why do I lay something at his feet only to turn around in the next breath and pick it back up?
Sometimes I think it will be better (and maybe even quicker) if I handle my problems on my own. Why is it so hard for me to trust God? Is it that God is not trustworthy? No, far from it. This is another quick answer. If there’s anything I’m sure of, it is that God is faithful. He is just and trustworthy. He can never lie or go back on his word. He is perfect, holy, blameless, and pure. He is everything that faithful defines and He’s so much more.
If God is so faithful, then why can’t I trust Him? I know I trust Him for my salvation (and that of my family) but do I trust Him for my day-to-day living issues? My today, and tomorrow, and next week? And oh –I don’t know– this pandemic we find ourselves in? Where did that come from? How do I know it’s not going to get worse from here? I know in the books of Matthew and Revelation, the Bible says it will get worse before it gets better, but that seems far away; I feel like we would be prepared for that. Right?
My issue in one word is: fear. I am so afraid of my daily life crumbling without notice. I can trust God for the big things (like salvation, and life after death, and such) but knowing that the world around us can change completely in an instant is frightening and paralyzing. I ask myself, “What if we weren’t already a homeschooling family when the pandemic started? What if my husband couldn’t work from home? What if I worked outside the home and lost my job? What if I had no idea how to help my children with their education? What if? What if? What if?”
On the one hand, I know I don’t have to worry about these things because we are indeed a homeschooling family and my husband is very much able to work from home, for which we are grateful, and I’m also able to work at home. (I’m very much aware that many families have had difficulty figuring out the answers to these questions and I’m not at all making light of that.) But on the other hand, we were going on with our daily lives and, out of nowhere, a pandemic upends our world and changes everything. Completely.
How do we cope with that? What else is coming? In my household, we have dodged this one so far; we are in quarantine and we’ve been ok. But what happens when the other shoe drops? As I write this, I’m realizing that I’m letting my worries get the better of me. The solution is simple and can be found in the Word of God.
Proverbs 3:5-6 reminds us that we should trust in the Lord with all our hearts and lay all our decisions before Him and He will direct our paths. Psalm 139 lays out a host of evidence that shows us that we can put our trust completely in God. (He knew us even before we were conceived. Can you imagine that?!) In Hebrews 13:5, we get a clear picture of the thoughts of God concerning us and Jeremiah 29:11-13 drives the point home. Verse after verse in the Bible reminds us of our Father’s unfailing love and his unwavering protection over us. But is it enough for us to read and memorize these bible verses? How do we get to the point where the truths in these verses resonate with our hearts?
I think the answer lies in obedience. We need to not only read the verses but we need to obey what they say. Jesus says in Matthew 6:25-34 that we shouldn’t worry about anything and our response to this should be to not worry. Simple, right? Yes, it is. We have heard that there is a “do not fear” in the Bible for every single day. We can wake up each day and remind ourselves about the words of Jesus. It is only through obediently trusting in the words of Scripture that we will experience the truth of them.
There is one more thing. Faith. How can we obey without faith? The book of Hebrews tells us that faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. While we may be unsure of our today and tomorrow, we can put all of our faith and trust in the God who cares for us, who knows all things and is in control of all things.
To sum it all up, the prophet Habakkuk says:
Though the fig tree may not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines; Though the labor of the olive may fail, and the fields yield no food; Though the flock may be cut off from the fold, and there be no herd in the stalls – Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like the deer’s feet and He will make me walk on my high hills.
These are the truths my family and I rest on each day. We may not know what’s coming or how our world will change even further but we can put our faith and trust in God.